1:5:10:365 EcoTip Blog

December 12, 2008

:347 Base Temperature

Take the 1:5:10:365 challenge: Do one thing – for 5 to 10 minutes – 365 days a year to make our home and planet environment better.

1:5:10:347 EcoTip: When calculating your energy use using heating degree days the base temperature of your home is the outside temperature that doesn’t require any additional heat from your furnace to maintain. A passive solar home will have a much lower base temperature than an uninsulated leaky building. To make the most accurate energy use calculations for your home it is necessary to adjust the Base Temperature.


 Additional Information:

Suggested Review: :343, :344, :345, :346

For general calculations a base temperature of 65 degrees F has been used in the United States, but your building may be much lower. The typical base temperature used in Britan is several degrees lower.

A well insulated building will do a better job of maintaining the indoor heat generated by appliances and occupants- which can lower the actual base temperature some.  When doing comparisons the closer your base temperature is to the way your building functions the better.

What is apparent is that the use of HDD can be highly variable and there are quite a number of inaccuracies that enter into the mix. A good article for explaining the problems in more detail is at http://www.energylens.com/articles/degree-days#base-temperature-problem For now it sounds like trial and error is the most practical way to determine your homes base temperature.

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